Jerusalem “Defense” Conference Opens In QatarBy
Gulf media is reporting on the “International Conference for the Defence of occupied Jerusalem” opening in Qatar today. According to a Gulf News report:
February 22, 2012 Manama: Qatar’s Emir Shaikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani will open the International Conference for the Defence of occupied Jerusalem, to be held in Doha next week. The conference will include speeches by the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, the Arab League Secretary-General Nabeel Arabi, Secretary-General of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Ekme Al Deen Ihsanoglu, and United Nations Coordinator for the peace process in the Middle East Robert Serry. Some 350 figures concerned with the Jerusalem question from Arab, Islamic and foreign countries are expected to attend the conference decided by Resolution 503 issued by the Supreme Council of the Arab League in Sirte, Libya, in March 2010. The conference, on February 26-27, will feature issues of occupied Jerusalem and international law, history of Jerusalem, Jerusalem and colonies, Israeli violations and civil society organisations, Qatar News Agency (QNA) reported. The first theme deals with the legal status of Jerusalem before and after the Israeli occupation, the reality and the future of Jerusalem under occupation, and the status of the holy places under international law. The importance of highlighting the legal status of Jerusalem proves the illegality of the Israeli practices and violations in the holy city. The second theme emphasises the most important aspects of the Jerusalem issue, including historic dimension and its status among the three monotheistic religions, and the Arab identity of the holy city. The third theme addresses procedures for the systematic intensification of colony and land confiscation in occupied East Jerusalem and the surrounding areas, as well as the demographic changes from 1967 to 2020, by which Israel aims to establish the Greater Jerusalem. The Conference will tackle ways to rescue Jerusalem, the Arab vision against the Israeli plan, the central role of Jerusalem in Palestinian politics, economy and culture and the protection of the city’s religious, cultural and architectural characteristics. The fourth theme discusses the role of institutions in the holy city as well as ways to find appropriate measures to activate the contribution of civil society organizations in maintaining the Arab identity in the city. “
The opening of conference likely explains recent statements by Hamas and Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi in which they called the Al-Aqsa Mosque a “red-line” for Arabs and Muslims and a possible cause for war.
A 2011 report from the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) analyzes how a series of conferences sponsored by the Global Muslim Brotherhood and held from 2006 until the beginning of the 2010 Gaza flotilla served as a vehicle for anti-Israeli incitement:
From 2006 until the dispatch of the Gaza flotilla, Istanbul hosted at least ten international conferences of the Global Muslim Brotherhood, and Global Muslim Brotherhood leader SheikhYoussef Qaradawi began to visit Turkey frequently. Some of the conferences were centered solely on Palestine and Gaza, with titles such as “World Popular Conferencefor the Support of Palestine,” while others addressed the topic amongst other agendas, including two sessions of the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS), headed by Youssef Qaradawi. Many of the conferences were organized by Turkish/MB network organizations such as UNIW or TGTV, and all of the conferences were attended by numerous Global Muslim Brotherhood leaders as well as various representatives of the Turkish government and/or AKP; on one occasion, Western flotilla activists were known to be present. There was discussion at several of the conferences of a new role for Turkey in the Islamic world, with some suggesting that Turkey would become the future nexus of the Islamic world, and fervent support was frequently expressed for Turkey and its prime minister. At conferences where Western reporters were present, participants were heard to call for violence in defense of the Al-Aqsa mosque and to laugh about the death of children during the Lebanon war. Israel was frequently vilified and demonized at the conferences by speakers, statements, and proclamations and described using terms such as racist and terrorist. Israel was accused of committing massacres and ethnic cleansing against the Palestinians and was said to be worse than the Nazis, having committed “hundreds of holocausts.” At one conference, delegates discussed the creation of a third jihadist front in Gaza in addition to Afghanistan and Iraq.
A series of recent and important Global Muslim Brotherhood events have been held in Qatar illustrating the increasing importance of the country to the global Brotherhood.